Blowing Up The Work/Life Balance Myth
ADWEEK|June 05, 2017

For women in advertising, The promise of equilibrium between personal and professional has become toxic.

Kate Jeffers

The term “work/life balance” really pisses me off. It implies that work and life are opposing forces battling for dominance. That one is negative (work) and the other is positive (life). And that achieving an effective “balance” of the two is even possible.

I just don’t buy it. As a human. As a leader. As a woman.

For starters, my life and my work are not separate; they’re completely intertwined. My life has significantly shaped my work and vice versa. I met my husband at an agency. We’re raising our children in a neighborhood we discovered through a colleague. In 2004, it was a friend (outside of advertising) who pointed me in the direction of a small, little-known shop called Venables Bell & Partners. And the rest is history.

There’s no doubt that I am who I am today because I work in this business. Second, in a plus/minus equation, I don’t (always) see work as the negative. I happen to think I lucked into one of the most dynamic and fun industries out there. And, I don’t (always) see life as the positive. That’s because life isn’t just what I want to do when I’m not working. Life is everything I have to do, including such glamorous things as sweaty lacrosse socks and Costco runs. And dog poop.

I know I’m not alone. It’s a statistical fact that women carry the burden of more household responsibilities than men. Despite the reality that there are nearly as many women as men in the workforce.

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